Good Bots And Bad Bots Online: They Outnumber Us

Good Bots And Bad Bots Online: They Outnumber Us

Good Bots And Bad Bots Online: They Outnumber Us

bot-traffic-report-2013

Bots account for 61.5% of all Internet traffic, according to a new infographic published by online data security company Incapsula. This represents a 21% increase over the past year, and it signifies not only an increase in automated web traffic, but a significant increase in activity by the bad bots – those out to skim information and infiltrate databases and computers everywhere.

Of particular interest is the revelation that half of all bot traffic is “good,” meaning that it is comprised of search engines and other automated programs that supposedly collect data about us for our benefit. The other half, however, consists of “bad” bots, which Incapsula subdivides by type.

These consist of the following:

  • Scrapers: some of these steal email addresses for spam purposes, while others reverse-engineer pricing and business models – essentially scraping data from existing websites for re-use elsewhere;
  • Hackers: tools that break in to other sites to steal credit card data or inject malicious code;
  • Spammers: these steal email addresses and send out billions of useless and annoying email messages, as well as inviting “search engine blacklisting;”
  • Impersonators: these specialize in intelligence gathering, DdoS attacks and bandwidth consumption.

In a recent interview with CloudTweaks, Incapsula CEO Gur Shatz stated that “the inadequacies of today’s defenses, juxtaposed with the ever-rising value of the information that can be stolen, represent a huge opportunity for cybercriminals. Personal or corporate devices are a tremendous intelligence source, carrying richer and more accurate data than ever before, but protections on these devices still mostly rely on outdated technologies such as passwords.” Compounding this issue is the degree by which so many devices are interconnected, and that the public remains largely unaware of the unrelenting presence and of bots and other automated programsthat visit their computers and read their data either unnoticed, or worse with the user’s consent.

Shatz points out that even a company without any major secrets or critical online functionality is still subject to being used as a “mule” to conduct cybercrime. “Even small online businesses such as ecommerce sites are vulnerable,” he says, “because downtime or slowness costs them both money and reputation damage”.

In the short space of one year the proportion of bots to human users has shifted from roughly 50-50 to 60-40, a trend that with most things technology-related, promises to continue, in accordance with Moore’s law, to the point that the vast majority of all web traffic will be automated, and much of that will be up to no good.

By Steve Prentice

About Steve Prentice

Steve Prentice is a project manager, writer, speaker and expert on productivity in the workplace, specifically the juncture where people and technology intersect. He is a senior writer for CloudTweaks.

Find out more
View All Articles

One Response to Good Bots And Bad Bots Online: They Outnumber Us

  1. I am searching for bad bots and found this post, may I know if you can guide me to get a list of most updated and common bad bots that I can use to block by using htaccess? Thanks!

Comic
Investing In The Future With The Introduction of Sage Cloud

Investing In The Future With The Introduction of Sage Cloud

CHICAGO, IL–(Marketwired – Jul 26, 2016) – Sage, a market leader in cloud accounting software, announced today at Sage Summit 2016 its strong commitment to future technologies, with a focus on new and existing partnerships that power business growth. Revealed during CEO Stephen Kelly’s keynote address, which opened the world’s largest gathering of entrepreneurs and…

2016 Tour de France: Racing With Big Data

2016 Tour de France: Racing With Big Data

2016 Tour de France The 2016 Tour de France has just concluded, with Chris Froome (SKY) taking his third overall win. Not the kind of event we often focus on here at CloudTweaks, but Dimension Data has put its analytics technology to use tracking the journeys of each rider across all 21 stages, and their…

Ransomware: A Digital Pandemic – Is There A Cure?

Ransomware: A Digital Pandemic – Is There A Cure?

The Rise Of Ransomware You can imagine the scene: you’ve just completed that business plan and a set of accounts. Finally, it’s done and saved, ready for a final read through and to be sent out to your contact list. And right when you’re ready to click “Send”, the next thing you see on the…

Martech In A Content Crazed World

Martech In A Content Crazed World

Content Crazed World Everywhere you look there are pop-up ads and offers, at times it can feel like overload. What used to be a few online ads on websites has now grown into a wild world of offers that consume your every device. These advancements in marketing technology can not only be overwhelming to the…

Hubgets – Advanced Collaboration, Enriched Communication

Hubgets – Advanced Collaboration, Enriched Communication

Advanced Collaboration Tool Sponsored series provided in collaboration with Hubgets Collaboration tools have advanced leaps and bounds with the advent of cloud technology, and the services available are only getting better. Promising features such as sophisticated group communication, productive management of tasks and meetings, and the ultimate dream, working remotely from some gorgeous island destination, innovative collaboration…

Do Not Rely On Passwords To Protect Your Online Information

Do Not Rely On Passwords To Protect Your Online Information

Password Challenges  Simple passwords are no longer safe to use online. John Barco, vice president of Global Product Marketing at ForgeRock, explains why it’s time the industry embraced more advanced identity-centric solutions that improve the customer experience while also providing stronger security. Since the beginning of logins, consumers have used a simple username and password to…

Four Keys For Telecoms Competing In A Digital World

Four Keys For Telecoms Competing In A Digital World

Competing in a Digital World Telecoms, otherwise largely known as Communications Service Providers (CSPs), have traditionally made the lion’s share of their revenue from providing pipes and infrastructure. Now CSPs face increased competition, not so much from each other, but with digital service providers (DSPs) like Netflix, Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Apple, all of whom…

Get Ready For Virtual Reality and the Cloud

Get Ready For Virtual Reality and the Cloud

Virtual Reality Cloud We’re lucky to live in an era where virtual reality is no longer relegated to the confines of a sci-fi movie universe. Thanks to technology introduced by products like Oculus Rift, consumers now have access to virtual environments with fully immersive graphic capabilities. As a result, companies have only just begun to…

Cloud Comings and Goings

Cloud Comings and Goings

Cloud Power Amazon Web Services – the giant of cloud computing – is on track to do $10 Billion in revenue this year. Yet, rumors swirl that Apple may take a huge chunk of business away from them and Dropbox has definitely left AWS. Is something wrong at AWS? Wait, Salesforce.com (SFDC) – the granddaddy of…

Cloud-based GRC Intelligence Supports Better Business Performance

Cloud-based GRC Intelligence Supports Better Business Performance

Cloud-based GRC Intelligence All businesses need a strategy and processes for governance, risk and compliance (GRC). Many still view GRC activity as a burdensome ‘must-do,’ approaching it reactively and managing it with non-specialized tools. GRC is a necessary business endeavor but it can be elevated from a cost drain to a value-add activity. By integrating…

Moving Your Enterprise Apps To The Cloud Is A Business Decision

Moving Your Enterprise Apps To The Cloud Is A Business Decision

Moving Your Enterprise Apps Whether it be enterprise apps or any other, if there is any heavy data that is going to be transacted in and through an app, then affiliating it with the Cloud becomes a must. And then an important question arises: How do you decide when to integrate your enterprise app with…

Is The Fintech Industry The Next Tech Bubble?

Is The Fintech Industry The Next Tech Bubble?

The Fintech Industry Banks offered a wide variety of services such as payments, money transfers, wealth management, selling insurance, etc. over the years. While banks have expanded the number of services they offer, their core still remains credit and interest. Many experts believe that since banks offered such a wide multitude of services, they have…

Cloud Infographic – Cloud Public, Private & Hybrid Differences

Cloud Infographic – Cloud Public, Private & Hybrid Differences

Cloud Public, Private & Hybrid Differences Many people have heard of cloud computing. There is however a tremendous number of people who still cannot differentiate between Public, Private & Hybrid cloud offerings.  Here is an excellent infographic provided by the group at iWeb which goes into greater detail on this subject. Infographic source: iWeb

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth The Internet of Things is the latest term to describe the interconnectivity of all our devices and home appliances. The goal of the internet of things is to create universal applications that are connected to all of the lights, TVs, door locks, air conditioning, and…

Internet Of Things – Industrial Robots And Virtual Monitoring

Internet Of Things – Industrial Robots And Virtual Monitoring

Internet Of Things – Industrial Robots And Virtual Monitoring One of the hottest topics in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is the Internet of Things (IOT). According to the report of International Telecommunication Union (2012), “the Internet of things can be perceived as a vision with technological and societal implications. It is considered as a…